Monday, December 1, 2008
The Master Plan
One of my goals this year is to build a deck on the back of our town home. I want to get right to it. If it were up to me I would pull out some tools and start cutting out windows and installing doors. I would have a bunch of lumber delivered and would start sawing and nailing till I had a deck. It does not work this way though. See, we have this neighborhood association, actually, we have two neighborhood associations, and both of them want me to have a master plan. Not only do they want me to have this plan, but they want to approve it. They want my neighbors to approve this plan as well. They want to know everything: what kinds of material I will use, what the deck will look like, and what the size of the deck will be. They want me to have permits and a time schedule. They want everything. It’s not that they do not want me to have this deck. They just want it to add value to my house and to the entire neighborhood. They want this deck to be safe and secure. They want my neighbors to continue to be happy with me so that life will remain copasetic for all of us and so that everyone’s property values increase.
Plans are essential for success in life and for success in every undertaking. In an expedition it is also important to plan. In commenting about the need for a strategic plan at the National Outdoor Leadership School in The Leader, Elisa Hitt says, “It’s possible to go on a hike without doing any planning, but, in all likelihood, you won’t get as far as you might have, and you run a substantially higher risk of getting lost. The same reasons apply to why NOLS needs a strategic plan-we would probably survive without one, but would run the risk of loosing our way (Hitt).” Just as the leader in outdoor education needs a strategic plan for the future, we too need a plan to navigate this life.
So, what’s the master plan for our lives? Everyone needs to have a plan, right? So, what’s your plan? This is a very important question for all of us to consider. Paul considers his plan as he begins his letter to the Colossians. Paul says these words in his introduction to Colossians in chapter 1, verses 1-2:
“I, Paul, have been sent on special assignment by Christ as part of God’s master plan. Together with my friend Timothy, I greet the Christians and stalwart followers of Christ who live in Colosse. May everything good from God our Father be yours! (Peterson).”
Paul’s plan is simple. Paul’s plan is God’s plan; his plan is to join in with his Master’s master plan. We are all invited into the Master’s Plan. We, like Paul, have a special assignment and are invited into the work of the advancement of God’s kingdom here on earth. Our lives have purpose and direction, if we follow the Master’s plan. So, what is a plan, and what is the Master’s plan? Why does the Master want us to join with His plan?
According to Wikipedia, a plan “Should be a realistic view of expectations. Depending upon the activities, a plan can be long range, intermediate range or short range. A Plan is the framework within which we must operate. For management seeking external support, the plan is the most important document and key to growth. Preparation of a comprehensive plan will not guarantee success, but lack of a sound plan will almost certainly ensure failure ("Wikipedia.Org").” My neighborhood association knows this about panning and so does the National Outdoor Leadership School. This is why they are so adamant about having a plan. They know that “If you fail to plan; you plan to fail.” A plan ensures that we have realistic and achievable goals that fit with the larger picture and leads to ultimate success or achievement.
As followers of Jesus, it is important to realize that there is a plan for our lives as well and that we join in with the larger plan that God has for us. We are invited to live into God’s master plan. This plan is the larger framework upon which our lives and plans hang. Following the Master’s plan ensures that our lives fit seamlessly with the larger picture that God has. A master plan ensures value. Following this plan ensures growth in us and the advancement and growth of His Kingdom. Following God’s plan ensures life is lived to its fullest and we are most alive. A plan ensures minimal risks and optimal performance. This plan for living is outlined in scripture and leads us to God’s fullest for us. This master plan leads us to God Himself. There is no greater achievement.
Planning to follow the Master’s Plan,
Hitt, Elisa. "Expedition 2013." The Leader Fall 2008 2008: 3.
Peterson, Eugene H. The Message : The Bible in Contemporary Language. Colorado Springs, Colo: NavPress, 2002.